pp 1–11 | Cite as

Maker’s Workshop: a Framework to Support Learning through Making

  • Rachel Kaminski Sanders
  • Theodore J. Kopcha
  • Kalianne L. Neumann
  • Kristin Brynteson
  • Carrie Bishop
Original Paper


Making and makerspaces are currently an exciting topic in education. The constructionist nature of learning through making, however, creates an inherent tension for teachers – one where the need to meet specific standards must be balanced with the open-ended, creative problem-solving that making supports. Unlike the traditional teacher-centered approach to English Language Arts instruction, the Writer’s Workshop is a process-oriented approach to writing nationally recognized as a student-centered environment that balances that tension. This paper draws on the research around the existing framework of Writer’s Workshop to create a new framework for supporting the learning that takes place in a makerspace environment. The framework, called Maker’s Workshop, offers a process for upholding constructionist approaches to learning while meeting Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) standards. To demonstrate the framework in action, we present the case of STEM Read at Northern Illinois University (NIU). The paper provides scholars and practitioners a guide for teaching and learning while also suggesting opportunities for research.


Interdisciplinary instruction Makerspaces STEM education Writer’s workshop 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications & Technology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rachel Kaminski Sanders
    • 1
  • Theodore J. Kopcha
    • 2
  • Kalianne L. Neumann
    • 3
  • Kristin Brynteson
    • 4
  • Carrie Bishop
    • 2
  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of South Carolina UpstateSpartanburgUSA
  2. 2.Learning, Design, and TechnologyThe University of GeorgiaAthensUSA
  3. 3.Educational TechnologyOklahoma State UniversityStillwaterUSA
  4. 4.Center for P-20 EngagementNorthern Illinois UniversityDeKalbUSA

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